Location Tracking

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Wireless location tracking is an area of research currently being undertaken by the SOWN Project group. Specifically it is technology intended to determine a person's location in the world by looking at the Wireless Access Points in the immediate area surrounding them. With sufficient information about the network names (SSID) and signal strengths, it is possible to triangulate the position of the node.

Pages in this Section

Mathematical Theory

Prior to begining development of the software purely mathematical models are being researched (signal strength decreases at a rate proportional to 1/r^2 (r being the distance from the node)). This page deals with the mathematical theory behind determining your location with wireless signal strength.

Link Budget

More details at Link_Budget


Technical Information

Work has begun on a database to store the location information see Location Tracking/Database. The database currently estimates locations of nodes using a weighted average of all the observerd points. This results in access points appearing to be on roads rather than in the houses where they belong.

The node locations are currently output using [GeoServer] with the WMS standard so you can browse then using a browser interface like [Open Layers] or Google Maps. You should also be able to get the points using KML for a particular area or all areas.

Andrew Willmott is also working on a user interface to the system which allows users to upload their data in a user friendly way as well as to compare their stats with eachother. It should probably be turned into a Facebook app or similar as there is no point in re-inventing the wheel.

Details on the system which processes observations into locations of access points can be found on the Observation Processing page.

User Guides

A user guide is currently being written.


Random liks of mild relevence to Location Finding

http://www.placelab.org/publications/pubs/wmash-placelab.pdf - Good document on what location aware applications can do

http://www.placelab.org/ - Application for using WiGLE database to work out the location of a device

http://wigle.net/gpsopen/gps/GPSDB/ - Database of wireless access points worldwide

http://www.cs.bgu.ac.il/~benmoshe/RadioMaps/ - How to estimate maps of wireless coverage

http://activecampus.ucsd.edu/ - Locaton aware computing site

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Inverse_distance_weighting - Method of aproximating graphs

http://www.cs.indiana.edu/~yonliu/ - Person who does reserch into location aware computing